This new clothing brand is perfect for cigar connoisseurs
Cigar lovers, rejoice. One of the industry’s biggest champions, author Aaron Sigmond recently launched SIGAR CLOTHING, a ready-to-wear collection and a scented candle for cigar smokers. The author of The Impossible Collection Of Cigars and Playboy: The Book of Cigars d’Assouline has created some made-to-order shirts that have pockets large enough to hold plenty of cigars, and other design details that cigar connoisseurs will love. , like a patent pending “cigar shell” pocket. He talks to us today about the collection, its design and its know-how.
Why did you decide to launch SIGARWEAR?
Like so many recent entrepreneurial ventures, SIGARWEAR started out as a pandemic project – something that was envisioned during quarantine. And frankly, it wasn’t my idea. It was my longtime business partner and tailor, Max Girombelli, owner of Duca Sartoria New York, a custom-made workshop on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. Or at least for what became the Core Collection was his idea. As an avid cigar smoker, I’m always looking for a way to carry cigars on me, but in an uncluttered and discreet way. Traditionally, most cigar aficionados wear the classic Cuban guayabera – the large pockets can accommodate an abundance of cigars. However, the guayabera does not match my personal style preferences, nor those of Max. We wanted something closer to a contemporary Italian camp collar shirt, but with the ability to carry your precious Havanas or Dominican cigars. Max has designed a number of sample shirts, all with iterations of our signature two-finger cigar shell â¢ pocket, now patent and trademark. The country jacket and waistcoat, as well as trousers and Bermuda shorts with the three-finger cigar-shell pocket followed.
Wanting to build on the global concept and be inspired by niche brands / boutiques like Bape, Human Made, Supreme and global brands, like Louis Vuitton, I thought it would be fun to do periodic collaborative drops, limited edition and unique. various personal and home accessories. The SIGARWEAR No. 11 candle was made with Brooklyn-based perfume studio and craft candle maker Joya. Ashtray # 1 in the SIGARWEAR artist series is by ceramic artist Dean Roper. More limited cuts are already in the works.
Is there really a need for clothing incorporating cigars?
The clastic guayabera has been a staple in Latin American (in Mexico, it’s the âMexican wedding shirtâ), Caribbean (Cuban), South Florida and Texas men’s fashion since the mid-1970s. Twentieth century. However, the basic design concept dates back to the 18th century. At the end of the 19th century, according to The Guayabera: A Shirts Story: âRecords describe the guayabera as a shirt or jacket, which may have resembled the uniforms of Spanish and Cuban soldiers of the time. Unlike contemporary guayabera, this military garment featured four pockets positioned along the hem. Today, the four pockets are positioned with two at the waist / hem and two chest pockets, with the top pockets being perfectly suited for cigars. A Shirts Story continues, âOther sources describe its use in the countryside by Cuban landowners and field workers. Anyway, usually one of the chest pockets was reserved for cigars.
The SIGARWEAR Core Collection bespoke long and short sleeve shirts, available in two fabrics and several colors, are a distinctive fusion of the Cuban guayabera and the Italian camp collar shirt. It is a natural step in the evolution of men’s fashion. As for the utilitarian nature of the shirt, you need as much a cigar shirt as a dive watch that never gets wet, office divers as they are called.
How does the cigar shell pocket protect cigars?
The two-finger and three-finger cigar shell pocket is a combination of rather innovative textile engineering incorporated into an exclusive pocket design, combined with a removable hand-sewn soft Italian leather ‘shell’ or case that works in conjunction with the pocket design to protect cigars from wearers. The design is original for Max, and it works perfectly. I have been wearing various SIGARWEAR samples for over a year and this is an ideal system. I mean, it’s not carbon fiber or Kevlar, but for normal use it works great and comes in two sizes. One accommodates more traditional size cigars, the other larger sizes preferred by many cigar smokers these days.
What inspired the design? Are there any historical elements linked to the cultivation of cigars?
The SIGARWEAR Core collection is made up of Italian-made three-season garments – which will take one from spring to late fall – designed for discerning cigar aficionados. Each garment in the Bespoke Main Collection is made to order and made from high quality fabrics for today’s casual and active lifestyle, while maintaining a refined sartorial sensibility. The Core Collection is designed for a comfortable fit and perfectly suited for city, country and travel.
Again, the initial inspiration for the shirts was the classic Guayabera, and the Italian camp collar shirts, and the country jackets are basically that, with the addition of the cigar shell pocket, of course.
Where is the collection produced?
The Core Collection is handcrafted in Italy. The limited edition home and personal accessories will be made wherever our respective partners are located. The candle was made in New York and the ashtrays are made in St. Louis, Missouri.
You’ve taken a unique and more personalized approach to distribution. Can you describe the experience and why you went in this direction?
Buying online via an e-commerce site and via a link to a social network is massively impersonal. So we’ve decided to take a very opposite approach when it comes to the Core Collection … it’s a much more personalized style than most digital-focused brands. Honestly, although it is not the same, SIGARWEAR has decidedly based its style of customer service – whether in person at a trunk show or at the New York workshop, or a completely virtual exchange – on the old-fashioned, personal customer service approach. and focused on Max’s hospitality which he has perfected over the years. while looking after its tailor-made clients – the emphasis is firmly on old-fashioned service. So while we exclusively promote SIGARWEAR on Instagram via the @sigcigar and @sigarwear flow, the Core Collection experience only starts there. After that, all communication is done via Zoom, email or in person – a combination of these. For us, Instagram is exclusively a marketing and promotion tool, a way to get the word out. This is far from the totality of the experience, as it is with so many brands. When it comes to accessories and other limited edition items, this is a traditional e-commerce experience, but not the Core Collection.
What elements of craftsmanship are most important to you?
The one element that I guess is the most important to me personally is a little clichÃ©, nonetheless, clichÃ©s exist for a reason, and that element is ‘passion’.
For the rest, it is easy to say that the basis of my entire career and my writings rests on the great admiration of crafts and traditional craftsmanship – be it sartorial craftsmanship, headgear, hand-rolled cigars, handcrafted distillates, hand assembled and finished with beautiful Swiss watches, hand-sharpened knives, etc. As such, I couldn’t boil it down to global items per se – everything is important. As the expression attributed by Mies van der Rohe says, “The devil is in the details”. In short, everything counts. It really is, which is why passion is precious and paramount.
What are the hidden components that are the most special or unique?
Once again, some details that make you smile. A personal embroidered message or a secret pocket in a garment. The very nature of bespoke, bespoke, bespoke and made-to-order is the combination of craftsmanship and fantasy. Look at Faberge eggs – superlative, truly sublime craftsmanship, with an element of delight. Achieving the mix of craftsmanship and fantasy is what it is. If not, buy the peg and be done with it.
This interview has been slightly edited and condensed.